According to Ken Rosenthal of Foxsports.com, the Cleveland Indians are in fact informing teams that former CY Young award winner Cliff Lee is available.
Who is the team in the best position to obtain Lee? It may surprise you, but according to Rosenthal it may be the Texas Rangers.
In order to be able to work a deal for Lee the Rangers would have to clear some excess payroll. The most likely target to be dealt would be third baseman Hank Blalock, who is set to make $6.2 million this year.
However, even if they structure themselves financially, it is believed that the Indians would command at least one of the Rangers three prime pitching prospects either Derek Holland, Neftali Feliz, or Martin Perez. Word is the Rangers have no interest in moving any of them.
The Rangers following last night's loss to the Padres have fallen ½ game behind the Angels for first place in the AL West.
If the Rangers were able to clear payroll by moving Blalock or another player, then I see no reason why they wouldn't make a push for Lee.
The Rangers are one of only three teams (the others being the Mariners & Nationals) to have never played in a World Series. If they are in a serious position to make a postseason run they owe it to their fans to make something happen.
I don't expect the Rangers to give away the world for Lee, but I would imagine they would be willing to part with at least one of their three pitching prospects.
Maybe a deal of Perez or Feliz (I don't' think they'll give up Holland) packaged with another prospect like Taylor Teagarden, and a low level prospect.
In the end I think Lee is certainly going to move. Too many teams are in need of pitching, and it's only a matter of time until somebody cracks and gives up a young starter.